"To unite all the elements of the English language to inspire confident, competent and creative  communicators, writers and readers."

At Chestnuts we have a combined curriculum for Reading and Writing. We ensure coverage of the National Curriculum throughout Key Stage 1 and 2, children are exposed to a range of different text types encompassing fiction, non-fiction and poetry. This helps broaden children’s reading exposure, and allows them to experience a wider scope of different authorial styles, text structures and themes within texts.

As a school we focus on the themes and conventions of texts to create an environment where children feel confident discussing and analysing the deeper meanings and purposes behind texts and using this knowledge to inform their writing. Key writing skills are taught, informed by the reading, while SPAG is explicitely taught in a stand alone lesson. The aim is that children progress in their understanding of writer’s choices and the messages in their writing, so that they are better able to answer inference and evaluation as they progress throughout the school.

Daily teaching of English 

During Reception and Year 1 the children will have a daily phonics session where they will be working through our Phonics scheme of work. Children in these year groups are also read with regularly by adults in the school to improve their decoding and comprehension skills. As well as this, English lessons in Reception and Year 1 are based on a text that the children immerse themselves in, with opportunities for exploration, art, drama and writing based around this.

When the children enter Year 2 and they become more fluent readers, the class planning follows the same format as the rest of the school.

In Years 2 -6 we:

  • One morning session covering a range of fiction, non-fiction and poetry text types. This is planned in units that
    will last from 1 – 4 weeks each and will incorporate the VIPERS framework and Jane Blakey’s consultation on mining
    texts for themes and stylistic devices.
  • Classes read their own home/school readers every afternoon and are heard by an adult every week. 
  • At the end of the school day, the teachers read to the class- either more of the class English text (if it is a longer text) or a text that links to the English text.
  • We  use the VIPERS framework throughout the school to generate Learning Objectives for our lessons. Children are familiar with the 6 key skills required of them to demonstrate they can comprehend and respond to texts in an age appropriate manner. The 6 vipers, (vocabulary, inference, predict, explain, retrieve and summarise) will encompass all Key Performance Indicators for each year group as set out in the National Curriculum for Reading.
  • As well as this, each unit includes the three complex tasks of performance, analysis and creative writing outlined in Jane Blakey’s consultation.

By following a consistent, central approach to reading and writing, children  become familiar with the structure of how English is taught at Chestnuts, and are able to demonstrate how their learning builds on previous year groups, and how it is preparing them for future learning.

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